How to send a strong message through events

Whether the purpose of an event is to strengthen the company brand or deliver a message from the internal team, every detail of the event must be handled with care. The signage, décor, centerpieces, handouts and every other element of the event is a reflection of the company’s ability and reinforces its approach to business.

Smart Business spoke with Matt Radicelli, founder and CEO of Rock The House Audio Visual, about strengthening an image and conveying purpose with events.

What purpose do events serve for the companies that host them?
Companies host events for a number of reasons. There are upload events geared toward employees during which a company collects insight from its team members, or download events in which the CEO makes a statement to everyone.

There are also state of the union meetings that involve a combination of upload and download meetings with a message from leadership followed by an opportunity for employees to give feedback or ask questions.

For-profit meetings provide a revenue stream and emphasize the company brand. Lunch-and-learns are a common form of for-profit meetings in which a target group is invited to a free seminar that’s capped by an informative presentation.

Where should companies put their emphasis if their goal is to strengthen their image?
Much of an event is about presentation — signage, color scheme, service, food, the layout and flow of the room. However, the touchpoints before and after an event are just as critical.

The impression guests have of an event begins when they first hear about the event and ends the moment they stop thinking about it, whether that be the day after the event or weeks later. Companies should be mindful to create registration and informational emails that are consistent with the brand’s standards and leave guests with a cohesive and positive impression.

Companies can also build value into an event by creating actionable takeaways. Guests, whether employees or potential clients, should never feel as if they wasted their time attending an event. One way to reinforce a message may be by offering a branded flash drive to guests that provides useful information that emphasizes the key takeaways of an event and/or brand.

When should an events/production company be brought in to help with an event?
Whether or not outside help is needed often comes down to the ability of a company. If a company has the same meeting every month, there’s a case to be made for purchasing the necessary equipment for those monthly meetings, but only if it can be easily stored and maintained.

Similarly, a company could rent equipment if it has an internal person who can operate it and troubleshoot problems.

On the other hand, for smaller companies with less time and limited technical abilities, it makes sense to seek outside help. There are companies that can simply assist with audio/visual setup or can serve as a full-time consultant to help with all aspects of an event.

How can companies learn whether their event had the effect they were hoping to achieve?
CEOs tend to have a clear vision of what they want to happen at an event. Often, it’s their gut that tells them whether a message was delivered and received as they had envisioned. For every event, CEOs must access the ability of the team to set expectations, vocalize goals and targets, and make sure everyone involved has their assignment.

It is crucial to determine upfront what needs to be accomplished. This may range from basic presentation elements, such as clear lines of sight and crisp audio, to organizational goals, such as number of leads generated or introductions made.

Regardless of the intent, it’s critical to plan ahead and be very clear on what’s to be accomplished. Each event must have a purpose and that must be identified by the host. If a company finds itself struggling to achieve its goals, it’s likely time to bring in professionals to assist.

Insights Entertainment Services is brought to you by Rock The House